Breastfeeding and Pumping Essentials

thirdlove, breastfeeding, pumping, seattle blogger, newborn, mommy blogger

Motherhood is something I love writing about on my blog because I enjoy sharing my experiences in hopes that I can help other mothers out. Although I have quite a few posts on motherhood, there were certain topics that I didn’t touch base on, such as breastfeeding and my pregnancy and birth story. I started my blog shortly after my son was born and I must admit that some things were hard for me to talk about but now that Gabriel is 21 months old, I feel that I have grown much stronger as a person and mother. I want to be open about my experiences and my goal is to help other mothers in any way I can.

When Gabriel was first born, I had a lot of trouble breastfeeding. I ended up having a very high risk pregnancy and had to be put on bed rest. Because of my complications, I had to give birth 5 weeks early. Luckily Gabriel was born healthy, however, his energy level was very low since he arrived early. He had trouble latching on while breastfeeding and even had difficulty drinking out of a bottle. To make a long story short, he had to stay in the NICU for three weeks due to his feeding struggles. During this period, breastfeeding wasn’t an option for me so I had to pump and have the nurses feed him breast milk through a feeding tube.

Since I was in the NICU everyday, I had a lactation consultant occasionally come see me and help me and Gabriel learn how to breastfeed. It felt like a long learning process but I was so happy that he finally learned how to latch on just days before he was discharged! Unfortunately, we started having trouble again when we brought him home and he would get tired quickly after breastfeeding so I had to mostly pump and bottle feed him. I just wanted to share my story because I know there are some moms who feel guilty for not being able to breastfeed for various reasons. What’s important is that your baby is being fed and there are definitely different ways to feed them. 🙂

While we are on the topic of feeding our babies, I wanted to share with you my breastfeeding and pumping essentials. Let’s get started!

Breastfeeding and pumping essentials

1. Nursing bra
ThirdLove offers a beautiful selection of nursing bras. Their 24/7 classic wireless nursing bras offers comfort and support for breastfeeding and pumping. They offer a helpful fit guide and even comes in 1/2 sizes.

2. Nursing pillow
A breastfeeding pillow is an absolute must and I love my Boppy pillow. I like how it wraps around my body and it was a life saver for us when we flew on an airplane with him for the first time! Besides breastfeeding, it can also be used for propping, tummy time, and sitting.

3. Nipple cream
I never knew that breastfeeding can sometimes be painful until I became a mother. Luckily, I found out about this lanolin nipple cream by Lasinoh. Not only does it help soothe dry crack nipples, but it is also safe enough to use on your baby’s skin.

4. Nursing pads
I was lucky and never experienced any leaking but I know some moms who did. These nursing pads are disposable and easy to pack and dispose when you’re out and about. If you are looking for a reusable option, the organic bamboo nursing pads are worth a try.

5. Nipple shield
As I had previously mentioned, Gabriel often had a difficult time latching on and got tired really quickly from breastfeeding so having a nipple shield definitely helped. It was much easier for him to latch on and he was able to breastfeed much longer than if we went without a nipple shield.

6. Burp cloths
Whether you are breastfeeding or pumping, you will need tons and tons of burp cloths! Trust me, they will come in handy!

7. Breast pump
Since I often had trouble breastfeeding, my breast pump was an absolute life saver! Medela makes amazing breast pumps. I rented their hospital grade model which was pretty heavy, but their on the go breast pump is perfect for traveling and working moms. It’s also important to have storage bags to keep your extra supply.

And that’s a wrap! If you’re a mama, let me know what your breastfeeding and pumping essentials are! 🙂


  1. October 11, 2017 / 11:28 AM

    OMG we have such similar stories! I had Placenta Previa and was on bed rest for several months during pregnancy, gave birth exactly 5 weeks early and had trouble breastfeeding! The nipple shield was essential. Pumping was vital for us and I’d add a pumping bra to your list.

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:18 AM

      It’s always amazing hearing other people’s pregnancy and birth experiences but it is refreshing to know that you’re not alone!

  2. October 12, 2017 / 5:37 PM

    I do not have a baby yet but still love reading your tips 🙂

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:21 AM

      Thank you, Miranda!

  3. October 13, 2017 / 12:45 AM

    This is such a lovely post. I’ve heard that women find it very hard when they have problems breastfeeding so you’ve bee very courageous to share your story. The photo of Gabriel is adorable by the way ?

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:21 AM

      Thanks for your sweet words, Zoe!

  4. Indrani
    October 13, 2017 / 3:44 AM

    Such a thoughtful post for new moms. You did go through some difficult period.
    Such personal lessons are rare to find because few are bold enough like you to share. 🙂

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:22 AM

      It was a difficult time for me but definitely worth it! 🙂

  5. October 13, 2017 / 4:46 AM

    Good things to note. I remembered my sister struggled so much! The breast pads really helped her out.

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:22 AM

      I didn’t use them personally but I heard they are pretty useful!

  6. October 13, 2017 / 4:14 PM

    I had to pump full time for my son, because of some growth issues he had. Definitely a great list of must-haves for pumping moms!

    • Polly
      November 2, 2017 / 2:23 AM

      Thank you so much, Kate!

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